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What's Good for Iraq ...

May 17, 2003

Barbara Ehrenreich (Opinion, May 11) points out the irony of the Bush administration pushing forward with a welfare state in Iraq while simultaneously opting for an entirely different and regressive agenda here at home. She asks whether something has melted the administration's "hard little hearts." The answer is no.

But sheer terror on the part of the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld triad has become a driving force in the evolution of its strategy for occupation. Commenting on the looting in Baghdad, Ehrenreich reminds us of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's insightful analysis: "It's untidy. And freedom's untidy. And free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things." Translated: What do you expect us to do, arrest these people and bring them to trial as we would in any U.S. city? The response would be uncontrollable violence.

Secretary of State Colin Powell tells the world that "Iraq's oil belongs to the Iraqi people." All the while our architects of liberation are shaking in their collective boots awaiting the next crowd of 50,000 Shiites (accompanied by one or two armed militants) led by a charismatic clergyman demanding that they be given the authority (eventually democratically justified) to make the decisions on the distribution and use of the oil revenues. Oh, the tangled webs we weave.

Ed Grubbs

Spring Valley, Calif.

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Makes ya proud to be an American, the way President Bush has liberated Iraq's oil for Iraqis. The education president can now "leave no child behind" and build some hospitals with the proceeds as the little kids continue to have their limbs blown to pieces by the remaining U.S.-made cluster bombs strewn about.

If only Bush would liberate U.S. oil for Americans. Hey, the proceeds could protect Harbor-UCLA Medical Center from closure, move emergency room patients at County-USC Medical Center out of the halls and reopen the trauma units that have been shut down across L.A.

"Free enterprise" -- how proudly the stars have been transformed to 50-dollar signs on the red, white and blue. Oops, got to run. Time for another oil war.

Andrew Kay Liberman

Los Angeles

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Re "Tehran is Quietly Making Its Agenda Heard in Iraq," May 10: Bush may be due for a dose of poetic justice: a faith-based Iraqi government.

Brian Masson

Harbor City

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